San Diego, CA (PRWEB) December 04, 2013
A new study conducted by Fabric found that Twitter is “the most important social tool for businesses.” Dubbed the 60 Second Social Media Study, the ongoing research indicates that 47 percent of those surveyed rank Twitter highest as a social network for business, followed by LinkedIn at 23 percent and Facebook at 20 percent.
“If you’re not already using Twitter to promote and grow your business, it’s a safe bet your competitors are,” says Jeremy Durant, business principal at Bop Design, a San Diego web design agency. With Twitter, small businesses can:
Carve out a distinctive presence
Business owners aiming to promote a product or service should spend time establishing credibility by tweeting great content and becoming engaged with their followers. Some businesses prefer to take a more passive role, using Twitter to keep abreast of industry trends and listening in on changes in customer preference. This option requires less participation, though for Twitter to be effective, a business must still carve out a distinctive presence.
Choose a Twitter handle carefully, Durant advises. “It’s the name people will use when they tag you in their tweets, so it should be a good fit with your business. The same goes for the picture you select for your profile page (which also appears alongside your tweets). Make it warm and personable, reflecting the human side of your business.”
The Google Keyword Planner can help identify keywords of most relevance to a particular market or industry. These are words and phrases to include in a Twitter post. “Also, use keywords to optimize your profile, making it easy for others to find you,” Durant says.
Hashtags are useful for seeking specific key words and getting in on trending conversations. Create a hashtag by placing # before a word and employ them strategically to promote forthcoming webinars or online events.
Tweeting and following
Great Twitter content informs and entertains. It answers questions, comments on developments in the marketplace and keeps a trending topic going—all in messages of 140 characters or less. Tweets are best limited to roughly 100 characters, with space left over for links and hashtags and so others can easily retweet the posts.
“Tweeting news about your business is fine, but mostly in small doses,” Durant says. “The broader strategy should be to establish your presence as an industry leader and as a sharing, enthusiastic member of the Twitter community. And when you come upon great content from others, do your followers a favor and retweet it.”
The best strategy for following people on Twitter is to seek out industry influencers who employ targeted keywords, as well as trusted customers and professional colleagues. “It’s considered good etiquette to follow someone who’s chosen to follow you, but it’s not mandatory,” Durant says. “You can also click ‘Favorite’ on someone’s tweet, which frequently means they’ll choose to follow you.”
For small businesses, quality is more important than quantity when it comes to followers.
Durant advises small businesses to include their Twitter handle on their website, in the business owner’s email signature, and in their marketing materials. It’s also a good idea to re-post tweets elsewhere online (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.). Some businesses opt to create a dedicated landing page for their tweets as a way of capturing new lead information.
“With tools like Google Analytics or TweetReach, you can track and measure your Twitter activity,” Durant says. “This will help you refine your efforts, based on the types of communications that prove to be most effective, and when you send them.”
Bop Design is a San Diego web design agency with offices also in Orange County, CA and the New York metro area. Specializing in B2B marketing, Bop Design creates holistic marketing plans geared toward lead generation and business development. Bop Design offers services in branding, logo design, website design and development, responsive web design, SEO, PPC, social media, and content marketing. http://www.bopdesign.com